Tag Archives: fruity cocktails

Frozen Summer Treat

Miss Mojito spent a recent Friday afternoon bidding farewell to a coworker at a work party. This coworker is particularly well-known for his affinity for what we call “girly” drinks, so I clearly had to make one in his honor.

What makes a drink “girly”? Typically, it’s marked by a mix of super sweet flavors, bright colors and lots of fruitiness.

I thought that a strawberry daiquiri would fit the bill – it uses seasonally appropriate ingredients while combining the perfect pink color with a sweet and fruity drink. But I didn’t want to mess with the hassle of transporting a blender and blending up batches on site at the party.

That’s when I remembered the Red Rooster. It’s a combo of cranberry juice, vodka and sugar that’s mixed together in a large, flat tray and frozen overnight. What you’re left with is a granita: a slushy cocktail treat that you can scrape into glasses and serve with spoons. My mom served these as a Thanksgiving treat, but I figured that the granita principle would transfer well to the strawberry daiquiri concept. The perfect, cool treat for hot summer days!

Miss Mojito preps her strawberry daiquiri granita


Strawberry Daiquiri Granita
Serves 8-9


  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 32 ounces strawberries, hulled
  • 20-24 ounces white rum
  • Juice of two large limes


Bring water and sugar to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Continue to simmer, stirring occasionally, for 6-8 minutes, until mixture thickens and reduces by about half and you’re left with a simple syrup.

Puree strawberries in food processor (in two batches if necessary) until no chunks of strawberry remain. If you’re looking for a smooth texture, strain the strawberry puree. (Personally, I skip the straining step.) Add lime juice to puree.

Pour puree in a 9×13 baking dish – preferably one that comes with a lid. Pour in rum and cooled simple syrup and stir to mix. Cover (with aluminum foil if you don’t have a lid) and freeze for at least three hours, stirring occasionally.

The finished product will be a big, messy, slushy pan of fruity goodness. Use a large spoon or ladle to transfer to cups, and serve with spoons or straws.

Posted by Miss Mojito.

Tiki allure

Bamboo torches, raffia grass huts, Polynesian gods, coconut cups, little umbrellas, exotic drinks – who can resist the lure of Tiki? Tiki offers a bright and happy escape, and all the aforementioned novelties capture the magic perfectly. Tikiwonder.com tells us that current Tiki subculture (file under “Lounge”) is a revival of the Polynesian craze of the 195o’s and 60’s, when people were enchanted with the south pacific.

Tiki bars and cocktails are seeing quite the resurgence. Places like Don the Beachcomber’s and Trader Vic’s are the founding fathers of tiki bars and cocktails (both claim to have invented the Mai Tai), but only one is still in existence. Solomon’s Island, Md.,  has a great Tiki Bar, and when that place opens for the season, it is apparently quite a to-do. Squidoo’s also has a top ten ranking of the best tiki bars in the country, in  case you’re looking.

Last month, Jason Wilson, The Washington Post’s spirits columnist, wrote an excellent article on tiki cocktails that led Ms. S&C to Agraria, on the Georgetown waterfront, for a Zombie and a Pancho Villa. While her drinks were top-notch, there was something missing. And that something was the tiki allure. There was no hut, no ceramic mug, no adornment, not even an umbrella. She wanted that as much as she wanted a tasty, tropical cocktail.

Tiki drinks have many ingredients, and most of them are not your staples, which is why Ms. S&C likes to go out for hers. Or, she recommends that you invite enough people over to make it worthwhile. The Mai Tai, the most well-known of tiki drinks, contains the classic ingredients of rum and orgeat (an almond-flavored syrup). Here’s one of many versions.

Mai Tai
makes one serving


  • Ice, preferably crushed ice
  • 0.750 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice, reserving a spent half-lime for garnish
  • 0.500 ounce orange curacao
  • 0.500 ounce orgeat syrup (see related recipe)
  • 0.250 ounce simple syrup (see NOTE below)
  • 1 ounce aged Jamaican rum, preferably Appleton XV
  • 1 ounce amber rhum agricole, preferably Rhum Clement VSOP
  • Mint sprig, for garnish


Fill a cocktail shaker halfway with ice. Add the lime juice, orange curacao, orgeat syrup, simple syrup, Jamaican rum and rhum agricole. Shake well, then pour (unstrained) into a double old-fashioned glass or wineglass. Garnish with a mint sprig and the spent shell of half a lime.

NOTE: To make simple syrup, combine 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Bring to a slow, rolling boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 5 minutes. Transfer to a glass container and let cool to room temperature. Cover tightly and refrigerate until chilled before using; store indefinitely.

Recipe Source: The Washington Post, Adapted from “Sippin’ Safari,” by Jeff “Beachbum” Berry (SLG Publishing, 2007). Picture: Mark Finkenstaedt for The Washington Post.

FWespadrillesAnd, the perfect shoes to complement grass huts and fruity cocktails? Behold the espadrille! The bright colorful prints and the woven wedge heels definitely speak to the tiki vibe. We love these Oscar de la Renta ikat espadrilles that Fashion Washington highlighted in their Lush Life section, but the $400 price tag has us looking for other options. These navy floral ones and these morracan paisley ones, both from Tommy Hilfiger for $70, will do. Also like the bright tropical fabric and wicker heel on this pair on sale for $35 at Piperlime. Wear them with a solid colored maxi dress, break out the ukulele, and don’t forget the little umbrellas, please.

posted by Ms. S&C

Song of the summer

The Drink: Watermelon Lemonade

No self-respecting cocktail enthusiast can go through the summer season without using watermelon in a delicious beverage. The bright color and watery texture are ideal components for drinks. Martinis, margaritas, sangria – you can’t go wrong with this ingredient!




The Ingredients/Recipe:

This version of Watermelon Lemonade is a Shoes & Cocktails exclusive! And, it is actually quite good minus the booze, if you want to go that route.

(Recipe makes 3-4 drinks)

  • Cut ½ of a small watermelon into large chunks (do yourself a favor and get a seedless melon)
  • Puree in a blender, then strain into a pitcher (you should have enough liquid for a 3 to 1 alcohol ratio)
  • Add juice of two lemons
  • Add 3 or 4 shots vodka, preferably Absolut Citron
  • Mix well, then pour over ice
  • Garnish with fresh basil

Modifications: I generally prefer things tart rather than sweet. If this recipe is too tart for your liking, I recommend adding more watermelon, or 1 to 2 ounces of triple sec, Cointreau, or some other form of simple syrup. You can also garnish with mint, and/or lemon or watermelon wedges. I prefer basil because it is growing outside my backdoor, and nothing beats that smell in the summer!

Bonus tip: Here’s another perfect opportunity for using flavored ice cubes. Pour watermelon puree into your ice tray and freeze.

The Occasion:

Summer is a very important time for one’s social agenda. Picnics, backyard barbeques, trips to the lake, the beach – there are endless opportunities for enjoying cocktails with friends. I say, download these summer hits to your IPod, fire up the grill, slip on any number of yellow shoes because they will perfectly accessorize the watermelon cocktail in your hand.

The Shoes: Yellow Shoes

Yellow shoes are this season’s hot item for your warm weather wardrobe. Practically every brand has its own version; there are so many choices and so many styles. I personally like my friend LC’s shown below because (a) the quilting texture is unique, (b) they are wedges (and we all know the benefits of wearing wedges for those summer outdoor activities), and (c) check out the super-cool clear wedge heel. Great find!


posted by Ms. S&C

The beach bum

The Drink: Sea Breeze

Erase any preconceived notions you have about fruity cocktails. Fruity drinks are not just for girls, or those with undeveloped palates, and they are definitely not just for drinking out of cheap plastic cups at the beach.

The Sea Breeze, like its sister cocktails the Bay Breeze and Cape Cod, is an often overlooked drink. You’re thinking vodka, juice – been there, done that, like when I was sixteen. Well, I say you should give this super refreshing and deliciously tart cocktail another chance. The mixture of fresh citrus and happy color make it a perfect companion on a summer day, beach or no beach. And, the balance of fruit juice to vodka means that you won’t wipe you out after you’ve had just one. So, don’t feel bad about two. Okay, three.

The Occasion:

Whether you are seaside, poolside, lakeside, or yardside, pull out your white linen skirt, grab your straw hat, and infuse some color by slipping on a pair of super cute sandals like the ones below.

The Shoes: Sandals

Nothing says summer footware like sandals. And, there’s so much variety: T-straps, ankle-straps, gladiators, or slides. I picked up these pretty little things in black over at Endless.com. Now, I’m so regretting I didn’t get them in green. The patent-like sheen on the straps and the cork-like insole means a little comfort, but a lot of fancy.

The Ingredients/Recipe:

We all know that the fresher the ingredients, the better the taste. Consider buying fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice, or juice them yourself.

  • Fill cocktail glass with ice
  • Mix 2 parts vodka, 3 parts cranberry juice, 2 parts grapefruit juice, and squeeze half a lime (my addition for extra tartness)
  • Garnish with a lime wedge or grapefruit slice

Here’s a bonus tip: add color and fun into your drink by using flavored ice cubes. The ones below are made with lemon and lime zest. All you do is zest citrus fruit (orange works too), add to your ice tray, add water and freeze.

Shoes & Cocktails wants to know: what’s your summer favorite? Shoes or cocktails. Make a comment below.

posted by Ms. S&C